So its day twelve. I am doing pretty well but I admit the schedule is really jammed packed tight. I feel like every moment I get to rest, its time to get up and do something. Even when I go to sleep, I feel like my alarm is going off and its time to wake up. In this daze I started to wonder about the Prophet’s time and how Ramadan might have been then. I get really caught up in imagining this because thinking about it makes me feel like I am closer to this man that lived 1400 years ago. Its funny why we- Muslims- feel so close to a man that we don’t even know personally. For entire generations a thousand and four hundred years removed to love a man this much amounts to something.
I think that because God loved his messenger so much, we Muslims today are left with that feeling of love towards him. In the Quran, Allah says “The Prophet is preferable for the believers even to their own selves” (33:6). The Prophet SAW in a hadith is recorded as saying “None of you becomes a believer until I am dearer to him than his children, his parents and all mankind” as reported by Bukhari and Muslim. It sounds weird, I had a hard time understanding this. I feel I still do. But I think one thing I realized was that this is not something that isn’t reciprocated. Infact, we know from the Allah in the Quran that “The Prophet is greatly grieved at your loss and extremely anxious for your good. For believers he is full of kindess and rahmah (mercy, love)” (9:128).
A hadith that really chokes me up- literally- is the one of the Prophet SAW saying to his companions (those GRANTED Paradise mind you!)
Would that I can see my brothers coming toward me to the pool and welcome them with bowls filled with sweet juices. Before entering the paradise, I wish I can offer them from my Pool of Kawsar.
Upon these words, the companions said: Messenger of God! Are we not your brothers?
He replied: You are my companions. And my brothers are the believers who believe in me without seeing me. Surely, I ask of my Lord to illuminate my eyes with you and the believers who believe without seeing me.
God even promises in the Quran in Surah al-A’araf that “those who believe in him, honour him, help him and follow the light which is sent down with him – it is they who will prosper” (verse 57). That is where this love for the Prophet SAW stems from. I could go on, but I want to get back to my imagining Ramadaning with the Prophet SAW. In a hadith narrated by Anas RA, the Prophet SAW used to break his fast before offering Maghrib prayer by eating three fresh dates, if there were no fresh dates, he would eat three dry dates and if there were no dry dates, he would take three sips of water to break his fast.
I hate dates. I despise dates. I don’t like them at all. But the Prophet SAW was a big fan, and had I been around for breaking my fast with the Prophet, surely, he would offer a date to me to break my fast. How can I say no to a date offered by the Prophet SAW? So I eat dates, at first begrudgingly. Now I eat them knowing that if I were ever offered a date by the Prophet I would no make faces or feel guilty about eating something I don’t like.
Then I read about how the Prophet SAW said, as narrated by Anas RA “Eat Sahoor (predawn meal). Surely, ther is a blessing in Suhoor.” The hadith tells me that sleeping in for sahoor is a bad idea. The Sunnah of the Prophet is to eat something, even if its- get this- a DATE!